Tuesday, October 01, 2002

I just saw the film Goldmember, the latest Austin Powers "comedy" . People throughout the cinema were laughing all the way through. But I wasn't, fellow travellers. He didn't even get a chuckle from me! It was probably the most appallingly racist, sexist, and right-wing film since Triumph of the Will.

Firstly there was the title: "Goldmember". Can you get any more phallocentric and capitalist! Myers is saying, "I love my peenie. My peenie is valuable. My peenie is the most valuable thing in the world!" And no one complains. I mean there were women in the audience, just falling about. What's going on?

Then of course there is the relentless abuse of the actor playing Mini-me. Considering that dwarf-tossing has just been banned in Europe, it is truly appalling that such a disempowering representatiuon of the vertically challenged -- he is after all, the clone of Dr Evil -- be shown on our film screens. Myers himself may argue that it's a celebratory characterization. But if this was the intention, then the realization falls very short indeed.

The film is also appallingly racist and sexist. In this film Power's sidekick is "Foxy Cleopatra", played by the African American singer Beyonce Knowles. At least she's not anglo, as she was in the last two films. But poor Beyonce has to endure being the butt of Myers' inane gags, and never once gets to say anything remotely radical about slavery, sexism, or American corporatist hegemony. If Myers was to cast a black woman, then why not bell hooks? Clearly Myers is terrified of women in general, and black women in particular. I mean, look at the poster. It speaks for itself, don't you think?

Then there are the famous (and very prominent) Powers teeth. Obviously there is a direct racial connotation -- teeth are white, after all. But there's another layer of meaning there that's even more ominous. They are clearly a sinister metaphor for the growing bellicosity of Britain as a nation, led by the now completely disgraced former fellow traveller Tony Blair.

You may remember Powers' ominous line in the first film: "We won the war, but we lost the teeth." This clearly equates militarism with dentistry, implying that if the British can defend Europe with decaying teeth, surely they are far more powerful when their fangs are immaculate. So, when Powers' dirty, crooked seventies' teeth are renewed to shiny straightness in the noughties, the message is clear: Britain is on the march, determined to build a new Empire! And who with? The Americans of course. For the Great Un-loofahed the gum gags bring on gales of hilarity. But for the right-thinking (and left-leaning) there is no laughter; only disturbing echos of Maureen Dowd's searing image of lemon fizzes on the banks of the Euphrates.

I know I speak on behalf you all when I say, "Mike Myers, we are not amused. Not amused at all!"

Monday, September 30, 2002

Just had a mind-shattering revelation, fellow travellers!

Regarding that last post: Of course Bush's war is an oil war. And Bush loves oil as much as he loves money. So it's definitely about capitalism. But it's also about sexism, fellow travellers.

Look at this picture. What does that remind you of? Not sure? Here's another clue.

Still not sure? Well, put it this way: Oil wells are built by testosteroids, right? And testosteroids get paid to build them. And when testosteroids have money, they oppress women by buying these.

So, if oil wells looked a bit less like these, and more like these, do you think he'd be quite so enthusiastic about a war with Iraq?

Of course not. He'd just find it all too threatening.

In short, destroying Saddam is Bush's way of oppressing women. Just like his destruction of the Taliban was.

Appalling. Just appalling.

Appalling right-wing blogger Professor Bunyip questions the idea that Bush's war is an oil war. But of course it's an oil war, you fascist! Americans drive big gas-guzzling cars. And Bush is from Texas. Texas is an oil state. What more evidence do you need?

No blood for oil! No blood for oil!

Sunday, September 29, 2002

The American Civil War was a time of great disruption. Most have heard the tales of brothers shooting at each other in fierce battles fought over slavery. Well, a similar thing is happening now too. You see, since Dubya declared war on freedom fighters once strong bonds of love and friendship have been torn asunder.

Here is one of my dearest fellow travellers, fellow travellers. Festival director Peter Sellars and I have worked together on many projects, and I actually co-wrote the speech he gave to Australians back in 1999, found here. I know that Peter is truly appalled by his leader's empire building. But he is still an American, and has not renounced his citizenship. So I am no longer taking his calls.

It's tough being an activist. But we must be strong, fellow travellers. We must be strong.

Appalling right-wing peenie-waver Matt Hayden has a vicious outburst about Australia's theatre scene. He cites the highly regarded Deckchair Theatre for special consideration.

I have it on good authority that he performs comedy around Sydney occasionally. I will make some enquiries and find out when and where his next gig is so that we can go along and make our feelings known to him.